Nursing Voices

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Are Nurses Verbal Junkies?

According to a news story published in the Daily Mail, a new book written by a psychiatrist says that women talk more than men, and that we are verbal junkies. In her book, “The Female Mind,” Dr. Luan Brizendine writes that women talk three times more than men, and that the act of talking floods our brains with chemicals that give us a rush similar to that felt by heroin addicts when they are high.

Look at these nurses standing by the Coke machine. When I first looked at this ad, I thought these ladies were just getting their caffeine fix for the day, but according to the good psychiatrist, they are getting a different kind of fix as well. During my long career as a nurse, I can attest to the fact that nurses love talking to each other about every subject known to mankind. But are we truly junkies? Let’s look at the facts.

People who are addicts share many common characteristics. Addicts are moody and they have huge appetites, especially for sweets. These characteristics are also prevalent among nurses. We crave chocolate, pizza, and Chinese takeout food when we are running our butts off at work, and we get moody when we work double shifts without taking a break. Ask anyone who works with nurses and they will tell you that you are risking your life if you take the last piece of pizza or the last doughnut sitting at the nurses station without permission. And yes, we love to talk. We talk about everything. There is no subject that is off limits, and it’s hard for our male colleagues to get a word in edgewise. Maybe that’s why doctors give phone orders. See the doctor on the book cover? He's getting ready to call in phone orders because he knows that the nurse talking to him can’t talk to anyone else while she’s on the phone. He's a smart doctor.

If nurses are junkies because we like to talk, it’s time to start Talkers Anonymous. Hello, my name is Mother Jones, RN and I’m a blaboholic.


Blogger greensunflower said...

I'm an addict and I dont want to ever enter recovery:)

8:59 PM  
Blogger Deacon Barry said...

Nope, don't have a problem getting my words in. Mind you, when the conversation moves round to reality television, you might.. just....

7:47 AM  
Blogger Cliffie said...

As a male, married for a very very VERY long time, I have tons of theories and opinions about this one. As one who hopes to make it another 5 or 10 years before one of us expires, I know when to keep my mouth and my keyboard shut.

8:10 AM  
Blogger apgaRN said...

As a nurse who works primarily with other FEMALE nurses (and an increasingly high ratio of female docs), I think the theory is right on: have you ever been at the main desk on L&D at change of shift? Holy crow! My ears are still ringing...

11:32 AM  
Blogger The Curmudgeon said...

Blabaholic and blogaholic both?

12:12 PM  
Blogger SQT said...

As a mother of a 6 year old girl all I can say is this is so true!

She literally never stops talking. It drives me nuts and I'm a talker! I have the most verbal child in creation. I've had people say to me, she's a talker isn't she and all I can do is sigh in resignation. At least now I know there's a reason for it.

2:29 PM  
Blogger TwinMamaLinda said...

Try the most verbal 3 year old (almost) twins in existence! I thought twins had a language delay?????
I am both a blab-a-holic and now a blog-o-holic. I'm with greensunflower - no recovery for me :) just more conversations!

7:51 PM  
Blogger Bohemian Road Nurse... said...

I'm a blaboholic, too!

10:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

talkaholic me? ohhhh yes. But men are the worst gossips. Get a bunch of old men in one of these little country stores and you'll see what I mean LOL!

11:23 PM  
Blogger Michael Clifford, L. Ac. said...

And all my life I just thought I was introspective. Now I learn that at least I am not addicted to neurochemicals. But, truth be told, after teaching for four hours I really DON'T WANT TO TALK anymore. Mabe that explains why the ex is an ex...

9:30 AM  
Blogger kate loving shenk said...

yes, last night i found myself talking at great length to fellow nurses about Dawn dish soap and the new product called "citrus kick" which gives off a very lively oder as you wash the dishes.

at 3 am in the morning--

and i thought the whole topic was totally interesting--


10:44 AM  
Blogger SQT said...

Old men are gossips!

My Dad's a retired car dealer, and those guys gossip like you wouldn't believe!

1:39 PM  
Blogger Jean-Luc Picard said...

There are a lot of blabaholics around; they go on...and on..and on.

3:05 PM  
Anonymous another nurse ratchett said...

Had to laugh at that, especially in view of my last annual review at work, where my manager commented that I was "verbose at times" in my documentation. Verbal as well as written communication is apparently addictive then.

12:56 AM  
Blogger AtYourCervix said...

High five to Apgarn! Yikes! The desk is insane at change of shift on L&D. We changed over to doing some change of shift in our break room, though that room is extremely small. We are not supposed to chit-chat at the desk at change of shift anymore, nor are we to give/get report at the desk. Ugh. They want us to do report in front of the patient - something that many of us still won't do, because of the sensitive nature of some of the medical history (STD's, HIV, etc).

The volume at the change of shift is just incredible.........

And lordy! We can and do talk about EVERYTHING!!!

9:27 PM  
Blogger TC said...

Good Lord, they may be on to something, cause God knows TC loves to hear herself talk. But an addiction? I mean, isn't there some biological imperative for women to be so talky?

1:32 PM  
Blogger poody said...

If it is like heroin then how come ny ass is still big? I know I can talk my own ass off. If not, then my new office mate can for sure! I love the lady in the book cover grabbing the Dr by the arm. Is she trying to finish a sentence or keep him from dailing the number.

6:04 PM  
Blogger Marcia said...

See, I knew I was a freak. I hate small talk and chitchat; in fact, I just made a whole post about how much I despise the whole Christmas shopping conversation thing this time of year.

However, if it's going to give me some sort of buzz, perhaps I'll reconsider.

9:00 AM  

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